Historic Scotland

Opening times

Open 1 April to 30 September, 11am to 4.30pm.

 

Overview

Witness a true industrial relic: the only reasonably complete water-powered beam pumping machine in Britain.

Wanlockhead Beam Engine was built in about 1870 to pump water from the Straitsteps lead mine beneath it. It was in action for about 40 years, until around 1910. Commercial lead mining here ceased in 1928.

Wanlockhead and Leadhills are known as ‘God’s Treasure House in Scotland’ because of the mineral ores beneath them. Leadhills gold was used to refashion the crown of Scotland, kept today at Edinburgh Castle, in 1540.